Sunday, June 25, 2017 This Week's Paper

Spaceworks fundraiser aims to raise money, awareness

// Program has revitalized empty spaces for thee years

When Spaceworks launched in 2009, the joint initiative of the City of Tacoma and Seattle arts group Shunpike had a goal to activate empty storefronts through artistic enterprises. Since then, the program has given some local artists the opportunity to create successful businesses for themselves that they may not have had the resources to start on their own. On Sept. 15, the community will have an opportunity to support the effort by attending the Spaceworks Cakewalk fundraiser to raise money and build support for the program.

Cakewalk also includes an artwalk, featuring pieces made by a variety of local artists. Winners of each round of the cakewalk and artwalk will be able to choose their own piece. Bakers and artists have donated items to be used as prizes, and highlights include a hand-made cake stand by Bella Balls owner Diane Hanson – valued at about $1,700. Tickets for the artwalk are $20, and tickets to the cakewalk are $5.

Additional pieces will be available from local artists Sean Alexander, Jessica Spring, Chandler O’Leary, Janet Marcavage and more.

Organizers hope to raise at least $5,000 from the fundraiser. “This is not a huge fundraising goal, but we’re also trying to gather community support, as well,” said Spaceworks Tacoma Coordinator Rebecca Solverson. “It doesn’t cost much to run the program, and this kind of money will make a big difference.”

Solverson recommends arriving early to the event if you are hoping to win your favorite art pieces. So far, there are about 30 pieces to “walk” off, along with about 20 cakes. Drinks and refreshments will also be available throughout the night.

The night’s festivities will also feature performances by DJ Broam, Mr. Melanin and BareFoot Collective. “We are so excited about the support we’ve received so far from the community,” she said. “I’m looking forward to celebrating with everyone.”

The event will take place at 311 S. 7th St., in the home of one of the organization’s newest creative enterprises, Electric Branch Creative. For more information about Spaceworks, visit